Forum Replies Created
Yes Patriot, though it would be reinstatements rather than additions. I thought Nottingham had a fine NH track and when Windsor stood in for Ascot a few years ago, it worked very well. I am sure, however, that those courses would justify their decision robustly and I’d be amazed were they to ‘come to their senses’!
Stilvi, I think they just made ’em tougher in those days! The Whitbread was routinely run on ground which would be considered unacceptably firm nowadays, yet the fields were generally top notch. Of course, there are more options in the Spring now (Aintree ‘festival’, Punchestown, etc) but any resemblance between the Whitbread Gold Cup and The Betfair Blimp Haveabetonusmate Handicap is purely coincidental.
Yes Ian, I remember ‘hard’ going at Devon, N Abbot etc, but also at Bath and Brighton. I remember Carrigeen Hill too. Wasn’t he pretty decent? Think he won round Ascot a few times.
Gladiateur, a more depressing conclusion would be hard to imagine.
Maurice, glad that you appear to have reconsidered your plan not to return. Can’t pretend that I agree with, or indeed fully understand, all of your analysis, but that is more an indictment of my superficiality! There are so many reasons to be positive about this year’s renewal (subject to Balthazar’s full recovery). Firstly, the race was won by a genuinely talented young horse who may still be progressing and should be a factor for several years to come. Secondly, the Canal Turn flag waving incident confirmed that, underneath that occasionally rather prickly exterior, Ruby is a pretty decent guy. Thirdly and for the sake of brevity finally, whatever Aintree did to the fences has worked…they are different, but still a major challenge. Can’t wait for next year.
Interesting posts Maurice and I hope you reconsider your plan not to return. This is a forum, not a classroom, so you are as entitled as all other contributors to express your opinions. Mind you, can’t agree with you about the race falling into MC’s lap. Unless we accept that e.g. in 1977, the race fell into Rummy’s lap when Andy Pandy fell!
The repositioned inside running rail on the approach to the Canal Turn now, effectively, makes the jockeys’ minds up for them, all but forcing them to take the same route as Pitman on Crisp in 1973 and Carberry on L’Escargot in 1975, both of whom cut the corner and saved many lengths on the second circuit. On the first circuit, with generally around 35 still standing, an en masse corner cutting is bound, occasionally, to cause problems. Maybe a case to be made for returning the running rail to its ‘old’ position?
Part of me hopes you are wrong and that Many Clouds’ connections won’t even consider running in the 2016 Gold Cup. Mind you, that didn’t harm his National performance this year! I just think next year’s Gold Cup could be something amazing, with this year’s 1-2-3 being joined, potentially, by the likes of Dom Poli, Saphir du Rheu and Don Cossack.
Where will Many Clouds go? Another tilt at the Hennessy would look an obvious choice, but how about the Betfair? Softish ground at Haydock might just suit him very well. Then, perhaps, the Cheltenham Trial (whatever it is called!) in January, then straight to Aintree with, possibly, a go at the Gold Cup as a ‘bonus’?
Next season’s big staying chases are already mouth-watering prospects!
I believe that from 1980-1986 (inclusive) only Duncreggan in 1983 and Earthstopper (post race heart attack) in 1984 were fatalities. I should like to know the source for your contention that pre-1989 deaths were rarely recorded.
The fences this year seemed a little more robust than in the previous two years and Aintree are to be congratulated on a job pretty well done. Yes, the fences aren’t what they were and some of the cores were clearly exposed on the second circuit, but they still present a major jumping test.
Finally, anyone who found today’s renewal boring must have the concentration span of a frozen pea.
It is now normal, subject to the occasional non-runner, to have maximum (30 runner) fields for both the Topham and Foxhunters. Why is this? Is it the prize money, the easier fences, or a combination of both? In view of the speed at which these races are now run, would a restriction to 20 runners not be a sensible move? As my username suggests, I feel the fences have been tinkered with quite enough already, so maybe it is now the number of runners that needs pruning?March 27, 2015 at 14:24 in reply to: Aintree wants to throw out photographers who are taking photos of drunk women #868561
Being sort of serious, for a moment, about a subject which too easily lends itself to mockery, is there any real risk to man, woman or horse should the drunken antics get out of hand? I am thinking of the Kicking King/Drunken Santa near-hit on the run in of the King George about ten years ago. I have never been to the National Meeting and am beginning to think I haven’t missed much.March 27, 2015 at 13:39 in reply to: Aintree wants to throw out photographers who are taking photos of drunk women #868488
Excellent Stevec. You don’t work for The Sun, do you?!March 27, 2015 at 13:13 in reply to: Aintree wants to throw out photographers who are taking photos of drunk women #868479
Good points stevec…you sound even MORE p***ed off than I am about the way Aintree is going! But, as you also mention, it is not just racing that is suffering from the curse of Carlsberg. That said, let’s hope we don’t see too much of boozy brassy busty blondes behaving badly beside Becher’s Brook.March 27, 2015 at 12:51 in reply to: Aintree wants to throw out photographers who are taking photos of drunk women #868473
Haha Moehat. Whenever I see the word “laidee” I still can’t help thinking of Emily Howard from “Little Britain”! Well, so long as you don’t frighten the horses.
Indeed Yeats. I can’t wait to find out who gets the coveted No 1 stall (or whatever).